tv Deadline White House MSNBC March 14, 2019 1:00pm-2:00pm PDT
i will see you back here tomorrow at 1:00 p.m. eastern and again at 3:00 p.m. eastern. you can find me on social media, twitter, instagram, snapchat and linked in. thank you for watching. "deadline: white house" with nicolle wallace starts right now. hi, everyone, it's 4:00 in new york. today by a vote of 420-0 the house voted to make special counsel robert mueller's full report public. that largely symbolic vote a clear message to the new ag even republicans want to see the results of the nearly two-year investigation release. for any of you keeping statistics at home, the free the mueller report resolution garnered 13 more votes than the anti-hate resolution did last week. and to put this in further context, congress cop the agree on legislation to protect mueller's job but now everyone in the house of representatives wants to see the fruits of his labor. this as news as mueller's top prosecutor has a new job lined
up outside of the justice department. andrew weissmann, one of the first prosecutors to join mueller's team and lead prosecutor in the manafort case, will decamp to nyu law school. the special counsel's office confirming his impending departure with the now signature mystique when it comes to timing. quote, andrew weissmann will be concluding his detail to special counsel's office in the near future. but with mueller close to wrapping up, congress is agitating to get his hands on their work and all signs are pointing to all prosecutions and investigations into trump, trump org, trump inaugural committee and trump 2016 campaign, the southern district of new york, new york state and other local investigators and d.c. u.s. attorney's office expected to leave the prosecution to presidential adviser roger stone. the one thing we know for certain today is this -- the legal peril facing this president and his inner circle is nowhere near over. and that is where we start today with some of our favorite reporters and friends.
back with us, and we're so happy to have her from "the washington post," white house reporter ashley parker. chuck rosenberg, former u.s. attorney who worked on the staffs of robert mueller and james comey, is here. frank figliuzzi, former fbi assistant director for counterintelligence, bloomberg opinion executive editor tim o'brien and ring stengel, former undersecretary of state for federal diplomacy at the table. all, lucky for us, msnbc contributors. let me start with you, chuck rosenberg. i'm beginning to think we got it wrong again when it comes to special counsel mueller in that what may be happening is less than a grand finale and more of like a relay race, handing off bataans to various other jurisdictions. is that possible? >> very possible. in fact several relay races. the report he's writing is important because of what he was asked to do to examine russian interference in our election is important. but there's a lot of other stuff going on, nicolle, including the
southern district of new york. even when robert mueller and his team finish their report, i am -- and i'm keenly interested in reading it, i am just as keenly focused on federal prosecutors in manhattan, what they're doing. remember, they're not cabined in the same way. they can look broadly and deeply at all sorts of financial misconduct. >> frank, let me get you in on the same question. it would appear we've been sort of arching towards some end point that may remain elusive. as chuck just said, there are ongoing investigations, and one of them donald trump's already been named individual number one. that same office now investigating the presidential inaugural committee, the president's business, trump organization, the 2016 campaign is still under scrutiny as well as new york state and the d.a. yesterday in manhattan announcing charges against paul manafort. do you see this spreading as opposed to ending? >> i see this continuing as opposed to neatly wrapping up
with a bow and telling the american public it's over. this is very complicated and as chuck said has many tenticals. but i think we've got the strongest indications yet, nicolle, with the departure or imminent depart churt of andrew weissmann, and also an announcement, by the way, of one of the senior fbi agents detailed to mueller's team, david archie, deputy assistant director to counterintelligence, he's leaving and heading to command a field office. when you put those two moves together, we are heading towards some sort of wrapping university mueller inquiry. the key question, of course, what will that seminole question -- the answer to the seminole question be? what's the russian criminal conspiracy? what did it look like? that's what he's got to answer before he moves on. >> chuck rosenberg, what kind of answers do you think we'll get for those questions? we were all together, you and frank and i at least, were together when andrew mccabe sat around this table a few weeks
ago and said there was indeed a full counterintelligence investigation opened into a sitting president. we know that robert mueller absorbed that investigation. do you expect those answers to be released to congress and released to the public at whatever point the mueller probe ends? >> not necessarily. i hate to be the one to rain on bipartisan congressional parades -- >> rain away! >> here's a few drops at least. i can think of at least four reasons, maybe more, why we should not see everything in that report, as much as i might like to. first, there could be classified information which would either have to be declassified or redacted. secondly, there would likely be grand jury information in it, which we can't see unless a federal judge orders it released. third, we normally do not talk about information that exonerates other people. at least we don't talk about it publicly at the department of justice and fbi. and so i can imagine that might be a problem too.
fourth, and in some ways this might be the most important one, nicolle, we don't talk about information related to ongoing investigations. and so even if 420 members of congress want to see the report, i can assure you that 420 members don't want to step on ongoing investigations. so they need to be careful about what they're asking for. i understand it's only symbolic, but it's raising expectations and there may be very good reasons why we should not yet see the entire report. >> chuck, let me do a little bit of raining alongside you. we can be neighboring storm clouds here. the point there was that 420 of them took that symbolic vote today but there were not 420 members of congress who wanted to protect robert mueller's job in the first place. so the idea now they want to see all of this work when they didn't view the core mission as essential enough to protect his job seems hypocritical at best. >> i'm shocked at congressional hypocrisy. you almost never see that.
but here's the thing, it's hard for any member of congress to vote against transparency. but i think there's a better formulation which will go something like this, we'd like to see as much as we can as quickly as we can without undermining any ongoing investigations. that formulation makes sense to me. >> frank, let me put up the three -- we've been talking about a handoff. here are three fates sort of hanging in the balance. mike flynn, president's first national security adviser awaiting his sentencing, rick gates awaiting his sentencing and roger stone, who was given a trial date today, awaiting his trial. these are three seminole figures in the mueller probe. what have we learned from the fact all of their fates will not be wrapped up when and if mueller concludes his investigation? >> it's looking increasingly like that is so. there's a couple of options here. one would be a prosecutor from mueller's team stays plugged in, assists or takes a lead but embeds himself or herself in
southern district of new york or district of colombia or whatever the appropriate venue is. the other possibility is he cuts ties entirely and hands it over and transitions to another district. that could be -- i think, chuck has heard me say this before, mueller was raised up in a system as a believer in a rule of law and court system and i can see mueller saying and thinking from a strategic standpoint, wouldn't it be great if the system, our rule of law, that some of the various u.s. attorneys trump appointed actually handled the end of this case and actually took care of business? i could see mueller doing that. >> ashley parker, in the time that donald trump has been under investigation for possible connections, conspiracy, ties, coordination, collusion, whatever c word you want to use, with russia, you have grown a human and raised a human. we're happy that you're back. but i want to know for all that has changed, what has remained the same in terms of this white
house's posture, vis-a-vis the mueller investigation? >> well, it has changed and also now what's surprising is that early on when these things were coming down, there was actually a real element of alarm in fear in what is coming for us. but right now having lived under this for basically the entirety of his presidency, what's so striking to me is people in the president's orbit, first of all, they're just like us. they don't know anything more about the mueller report than we do. we've heard the president is kind of asking aides, so what are you hearing? do you know anything on timing? which are the same questions journalists are asking but they've been living under this cloud for so long that as of now, there's not necessarily the amount of fear and anxiety that you would expect as all of washington awaits. they certainly want it to come. they're certainly a little nervous. but it's not really the out-sized sense of forebode you would expect in that building. >> is it your sense that's because they've been given some
signal the president is in the clear or just the deadening of the daily news cycles that have become really brutal for this white house and the president seems to have retreated into this sort of fox news bubble, relying almost exclusively on his own twitter feed for information and consolation? or is there some sense that there was someone who went in and exonerated the president or cleared the president? is it fact based or is it mood base that state of mind you described it? >> it's certainly more mood based. the president himself has said publicly and privately and does seem to truly believe -- to be klei clear, not that this makes it true, he believes he has done nothing wrong. so that's what he's expecting to find. some of what you said are deadness, a constant hum. they don't think the mueller report will land the same way, for instance, that fire and fury did. that seems odd, a special
counsel's report should be a much bigger bang than a scandalous book by a journalist but i think by this point they're so used to living amid crises and reacting to scandals that until they actually know what's in the report -- and everyone, they're specially at a disadvantage because they don't know what it's going to say, they don't know how to respond, they're just trying to proceed as business as usual for now at least. >> chuck, would that be in line with the reality? it's my understanding that senior justice department officials don't know what's in this report yet either and until robert mueller picks up the phone and calls the attorney general and says, okay, mr. are b.a., i'm done. probably calls him bill, they've known each other a long time. i'm done. i will walk this over or transmit it, whatever he does, we don't know what we don't know. >> that's right. it's hard to guess, and as ashley described, there's probably a numbness setting in at the white house. they've been battered for a while now about reports and findings and leaks and investigations, so i imagine
like us, they want to read this thing too. and then figure out where they bo from there. again, i caution, mueller's net was narrow. he was asked to look at precisely one thing, which is russian interference in the 2016 election, and whoever may have assisted them or conspired with them. all of the other stuff that could impact the president and presidency will likely come out of the southern district of new york. >> and, frank, is there -- it's been described to me as a seeding. will you explain that? that other investigations have been seeded in other officers that donald trump and rudy giuliani and all of the lawyers that came before them have not spent 22 months assailing and attacking and impugning in the eyes of the public or at least in the eyes of the trump base? >> yeah, the planting or seeding of these tentacle cases that are out there is a strategic -- is both strategic and also simply a reflection of the beauty of our system.
that we've got state -- we've got county, we've got federal, we've got different districts and all of them can work together and get justice to prevail. i think mueller has used that to great success and will really only know the true success of that in the coming months ahead as we see the fruits of all of the labor in these districts. i also think that -- gloets ble to the seminole question, i think congress, there's a middle ground in terms of transparency. we talked about it yesterday. the house and senate intelligence committees have great leverage when it comes on getting briefed on significant counterintelligence matters. there is no better a counterintelligence case than the one being worked by robert mueller. he owes them an explanation. he owes them an answer. they can ask for one. i think there's a way to appease the house and the senate by
getting them briefed when that report is ready to be issued. >> i was reminded this week by a source close to the investigation that robert mueller was never not interested in the obstruction of justice investigation. that along with the question frank's talking about, along with the narrow mission chuck described, along with the deadening i'm sure ashley has dead right about this white house, it's also entirely possible that we see a very detailed description of conduct that if it were anyway other than the president that couldn't be indicted would amount to criminal obstruction of justice. scooter libby, my former white house colleague, was charged and prosecuted for obstructing justice. a lot of people in the mueller probe have been charged and prosecuted with obstructing justice. there could be devastating information that if we take ourselves out of this deaden bubble, within any normal world, would be a calamity. >> remember, robert mueller's existence in this investigation came out of the fact that the president fired jim comey. and it's reasonable to interpret
that as an obstruction of justice. i think some of the things hanging over this is bob mueller's remit in the beginning was both narrow but it was also open-ended. and the collusion investigation almost gave rise to an obstruction investigation. clearly the president was threatened by an investigation of collusion. i think if you start to get into what were the president's motives for coluting or obstructing, it raises questions about his finances. i think early on bob mueller had a couple of things strategically to consider. one, was the president going to try to shut him down? >> we know he did, he tried to fire him. >> he contemplated it. i think it made sense for mueller's own sanctity, the investigation, to move some of it elsewhere. i also think he was very attuned to the idea that republicans in congress were saying you're going out, you're out of bounds here. he also by moving the sort of financial stuff and thing that's would give rise to high crimes -- >> the porn star. >> the porn star, move that stuff elsewhere and stay focused
so he could say, i had to stay on the straight and narrow and i kept it into this narrow range. you can't come after me for that. however, we're at a point where this appears to be ending. i think people suspected perhaps jared kushner and donald trump jr. might be indicted by bob mueller and that doesn't appear that's going to happen. so i think reading into where we are in the end game with this, before we know what it is, which is risky, i don't think the investigation has appeared to have gone as far as it might have. he appeared to make the decision not to subpoena the president to testify under oath. that comes from who robert mueller is. he's an institutionalist and believes in the rule of law. we're lucky to have him. but also makes him cautious to how far to push boundaries around these issues >> i was also reminded by a former senior security official that what bob mueller had access to, to simply put it, efrgs. not just u.s. intelligence, u.s. intercepts, intel, not just cia analysis, but five eyes intel,
anything that our allies share, most sensitive intel. so in terms of getting to the bottom of the question about whether or not the trump campaign was in contact with, we have the answer to that. we know manafort was in contact with russian agents and stone communicating about wiki leads and mueller will have access to the kinds of thick, as chuck said, work unwise and unsafe to release to the public. it doesn't mean this won't mean necessarily there was nothing there. >> but i suspect people will be a little disappointed by the mueller report when it comes to the main focus in russian collusion, because my book is partly about this, people think putin was on the phone to trump saying do this and i will help you and i will buy your hotel and this and that. that wasn't happening at all. the russians -- both trump and russians are disorganized crime families. they're not actually contemplating anything and doing it together.
so bob mueller will see a lot of what the russians were doing. i think it will be a little mystery as to what happened between them and as chuck mentioned and frank, he is handing stuff off to this southern district and other people. the thing is if you're a prosecutor and you're looking for some kind of crime in the trump family and organization, you can close your eyes and throw a dart and hit something. mueller is hitting stuff all of the time but it doesn't go to his focus, that's why he's passing it on to other people. even though the mueller report may be a little disappointing when it comes to russian collusion, there's all of this other stuff that will be happening at the same time. >> i want to just pick up one thread chuck rosenberg and i pulled yesterday at the end of this program. congressman skbrery nadler of the, chairman of the how judiciary committee, came out and described a meeting with matt whitaker. although there's a he said/he said, i want to try to boil it down from the enduring importance. what we know from our own network's reporting, chuck, is
there are, one, there's some open questions about whether or not matt whitaker tried to get involved with in an inappropriate way that recusal process for the politically appointed u.s. attorney there in new york. that seems like a question, and if we're talking about the ongoing importance of the southern district of new york, that seems like a question that people are going to want to try to boil and distill beyond the he said/he said that emerged yesterday and today. >> yes, you can imagine conversations ranging from the benign to the nefarious, right. benign would be the president simply inquiring whether his hand-picked u.s. attorney can reinsert himself into the case because he's a smart guy and i trust him and he has good judgment, to the nefarious, which is i need my guy in place to make sure nothing bad happens to me, and we kill this investigation. so as is typical, the angel is in the details. we need to know from matt
whitaker what that conversation was. but the thing we talked about yesterday, nicolle, is this notion that somebody whob had recused himself because of the appearance of conflict or actual conflict, could unrecuse himself, i'm just not familiar with that. i have been around the justice department for a long time >> it's not a thing, chuck? >> it's not a thing in my experience. this notion of unrecusal, again, could be benign. a president who doesn't understand that simple concept or nefarious, get my guy back in because i need someone to protect me. >> the last point, we know what prosecutors and investigators look for sometimes is patterns. there is a pattern there. donald trump desperately wanted jeff sessions to unrecuse himself and his white house counsel don mcghan out to get jeff sessions to unrecuse. that's also one of the flashpoints in the obstruction of justice investigation being conducted by robert mueller. >> that's right. and you're right, we like patterns because pattern means
content and content is how we convict. when you see the president or his minions seeking the unrecusal of people who can help the president and protect the president and make sure nothing bad happens to the president, that starts to look like a pattern, which starts to look like intent. >> and once chuck rosenberg invokes the word minions, it's time to go. chuck and frank figliuzzi, thank you both so much. after the break, defending the truth-tellers of our time. our special guest out with a brand-new book about life for donald trump's not-so-favorite trigger, "the new york times." and betting and beto. how far will his rhetorical gift of skills get him? and what donald trump had to say about beto's road block cable news coverage this morning? spoiler alert, he was watching very closely. by partisan rebuke, the list of republicans signing on to the democratic bill condemning the president's emergency declaration swells to a dozen. l. has been excellent.
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it's one of the simplest, most basic reminders but a vital one that bears repeating in the age of donald trump, the truth matters. judge amy berman jackson made sure paul manafort knew that, insisting during his sentencing yesterday, quote, if people do not have the facts, democracy cannot work. court is one of those places where facts still matterment another place facts matter and unprecedented headwind of the president who declared war on the free press by calling journalists enemy of the people is at "the new york times." shortly after "the new york
times" published a story in early 2016 under this headline, two women say donald trump touched them inappropriately, then candidate trump's lawyer reached out to demand an apology and the story be retracted. deputy general counsel's response took on a life of its own going viral. his response, quote, we did what the law allows, we published news worthy information about a subject of deep public concern. if mr. trump disagrees, if he believes that american citizens had no right to hear what these women had to say and the law of this country forces us and who would dare to criticize him to stand silent or be punished, we welcome the opportunity to have a court set him straight. joining us now at the table, new york deputy -- "the new york times" deputy general counsel david mcgraw, his new book "truth in our times, fight of fresh in the age of alternative facts" is out now. what made you want to put, what i would imagine, has been your daily existence for your entire
time at "the new york times" into a book and come out and talk about it? what is it about this moment? >> it really seems to me the basic attack on free press today is a hearts and mind battle. it is an attempt to -- by the president -- to get people to disbelieve. 26 of the people in recent polls said if the press misbehaves, the president should have the power to shut down that organization. you see a figure like that, you've really run off track. >> that's the important leap that you seem to make here, the first amendment, the legal structures around the first amendment are holding up just fine. but our faith in and belief is the truth is supreme not so much. what do we do? >> you can look at the attack on the press as sort of a bouquet of bling and bad policy. you can look at turning a press conference into reality tv and voting somebody off the island. you can look at it with the president's attempt to say that the law should change, could look at the crackdown but on les
but to me the real problem is the president has this belief. fake news is an evil genius, a bit of political theater because it sounds like it's a search for truth when it's just the opposite. it's inviting people not to think. it's inviting people to label. so i think the solution really rests as hard as it is, and as imperfect as this is, and as difficult as it is, with people standing up for freedom of the press, standing up as citizens in a democracy saying, i want to hear all points of view and i want to discern, i'm not going to fall into this labeling. and ultimately whether you're conservative or whether you're liberal, want to have a free press. >> your publisher has gone into the oval office on at least two occasions we know about and made the case calling journalists enemies of the people, you call it evil genius, whatever it is, that makes donald trump reflexively call out fake news
and enemy of the people is putting people's lives in danger. is this an active conversation for you guys at "the times"? do you worry about your journalists in this country and around the world? >> every day it is a concern. before i came over here i received a call from a photo editor who wanted to talk about a photographer in jeopardy abroad. we are in a criminal investigation in egypt for fake news. we are banned from going into pakistan. we're blocked, our website is blocked in china. very difficult to report the news. what concerns me though is the worst governments in the worst place believe they are incurring favor with the american president by joining in that denouncement, that is really not where we want to be. the state department used to pride itself, pride itself, of singing the gospel of a free press to what part of spreading democracy was about. we need to get back to that. >> two former presidents made a point to say what you're saying,
the importance of free press between donald trump's election and inauguration. what can be done, what voices need to be echoing what you're saying to make sure that -- it seems like the comparisons to an autocracy are not hyperbole at this moment with what you're describing. >> i think it's the people in the middle. i think it's conscientious conservatives, conscientious liberals and moderates. the people on the extremes are never going to see eye to eye on this but we need the people in the middle to move. i grew up in a very small town in illinois, my parents were conservative, both veterans. when you grow up in illinois when i did, one thing is true, the governor is ripping you off. the governors that were in power when i was a kid went to jail. the secretary of state was found with shoe boxes of money when he died in his office. the lesson was you can't trust government, that's why the free press is so important. i don't know where that fell out of the conservative chart. >> i spent time in the city of chicago and state of illinois, it's usually journalists who are
uncovering that rigged system for the citizens. one thing i've heard through multiple anonymous sources that you do during the day is keep reporters out of jail. one of them is here at this jail. would you like to jump in? >> i would be happy to jump in. we've known each other probably 20 years at this point and it's one of the great professional privileges and honor of my life to have worked with david. i speak on behalf of legions of reporters at "the new york times" who know when you're on the high-wire doing investigative work, working in difficult overseas environments, taking on powerful people with deep resources, you're reassured by david's presence. he is understood in "the new york times" newsroom to be a legacy ally, someone who comes to bat -- >> that's so nice! give me some dirt. what did you get in trouble for, and how did he get you out of it? >> you want the dirt. you want the dirt. i got sued for a book i wrote about donald trump. david had the fortune of being
the general counsel of "the new york times" at the time. trump rattled the cage for a bunch of stories i wrote before the book, before i engaged with the book and david had to fend those off, nasty letters, i'm going to sue you, la, la, la. very similar to the letters he wrote during the presidential campaign. when trump sued me, he strategically avoided suing "the new york times." he sued my book publisher and me because i think he knew i would get drafd favid for free. none the thes they got access to the hard drive of my computer. they mirrored the hard drive. david and i had to go through everything on the hard drive together and decide what to turn over to donald trump. he had lawyers coming in all the time. and at one point i think he finally said to his own attorneys, one day he could retain david mccraw because he realized he been outclassed. >> david, can i ask you a question, i was a journalist all of my life and state department during the campaign, and one of the things that distressed me
and amazed me is how little the american people knew about how journalism works, how reporters check their sources. there are lawyers like you, and the reason that the current state of fake news can take off is the lack of knowledge of people in the republic. i would argue -- and would i like to hear what you think about it -- journalisms and "the new york times" in particular has to be more transparent about how it works. showing sources, letting people read transcripts. opening up the process so people see how much work goes into every story and why they should be able to trust it. what do you think of that? >> i couldn't agree more. but i think "the times" has done that. if you look at the documentary on tv that was done, you got to see inside how the washington coverage worked. i think that's important. people are uncomfortable. it's not natural as you're saying. journalists are used to working behind closed doors and letting their work speak through the paper or on the air. my book i think is part of that. somebody from "the washington post" -- i was on a panel with
the other day said the great thing about this book is it shows how hard the work is. you may not like what "the times" does, but you're never going to come away saying oh, they're just sitting around making it up. that's not happening. >> it's a miracle it comes out each day. >> let me bring ashley parker in on that. ashley parker, you're famous for these stories where someone in the second or third paragraph your colleagues rigwrite this i based on interviews with 17 people. do you share this frustration that it's not always easy to show your work to the skeptical reader? or do you come down on the side that david's on, that fake news, the evil genius of that, has convinced some people that in some corners there is no truth? >> one of the reasons you mentioned that line of how many people we talk to, we do that for a couple of reasons but one is to signal to our readers, especially in this white house, that this isn't the view of just one disgruntled aide or especially early on when you had all of these warring factions,
this isn't just with the bannon ring or right wing is spinning. this is a full portrait of 31 people we spoke to and the other reason, main reason we do it is because as david said, and everyone who reiterated, we're trying to do the best job possible and get at the truth. if the way you get at the truth and way you have the most accurate picture of what happened in an oval office meeting or why the summit in hanoi fell apart is calling 31 people, getting all of their views and taking it as a kaleidoscope and presenting that truth in reality to the reader, then that's how we're going to do it. >> last word, do you come down on the side of being more optimistic or pessimistic and concerned about the future of journalism? >> nicolle, my book is a tribute to optimism to prove wrong. i will be optimistic again and say, we're going to get through this. >> all right. that's perfect way to end, "the book, truth and our times" is great. congratulations, thank you.
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any single democrat running to date, and i may not be able to enumerate evesingle one of t right now, would be far better than the current occupants of the current white house. so let's keep this in mind, and we can -- we can conduct ourselves in this way every single day for the next 11 months until voting begins here in iowa. let's remember that each one of us at the end of this, once we have a nominee will be on the same team. it doesn't matter whose team you are on today, it doesn't matter which perspective nominee you back right now, ultimately we
all have to get on board the same person because it's fundamental to our chances of success that we defeat donald trump in 2020. >> the most important thing you need to know about that clip is it was a veritable striptease. jacket came off next, and then the sweater came off after a question about marijuana. this is to me one of the most interesting days in this campaign so far. we are joined now by garrett, who is on the campaign trail in iowa, and alexi mccammond, who covers all things political. i want to start with you, garrett. what did you see this morning in that room? i think he is, if nothing else, going to be interesting to cover. i was jealous of all of you out there today. >> yeah, look, beto o'rouke still has it, whatever it is. he's charismatic, he knows how to get the crowd going. he had them eating out of his hand. he's never set foot in the state of iowa before. everyone was seeing him for the
first time. they know him as the guy who almost beat ted cruz but every iowan i talked to came away impressed. i think what will be interesting is how this develops over the next six, seven, eight months or how long beto o'rouke is in this race, where does he go from here? a lot of what he did today was listening. invite people to ask questions. talk about things he thought were good ideas. well, that's something that deserves more discussion or 2 z that's something we should be talking about in washington but he didn't show up with his own big ideas about how to do everything as president. every iowan i talked to talked about cutting slack for that, day one. but a guy who is inspiring to a crowd to someone folks could legitimately see as president of the united states to lead a democratic party, that is not something he talked about when he ran for senate. he sort of turned his back on democrats as a party and ran his race. this is a whole different animal now. >> garrett, let me just challenge some of that old political adviser in me rearing
its ugly head. i warn you, it is ugly. my advice to someone right now trying to stand out in the field would be to listen. isn't there a role in this field of 7,000 to simply go to iowa and listen? >> absolutely. and when you think about what beto o'rouke's lane might be, and i'm not one that really subscribes to that theory necessarily, but part of what he brings to the table is potentially an idea to sell progressive ideas to people who might be turned off by bernie sanders or elizabeth warren or some of these other candidates for whatever reason. he could be a more optimistic, less divisive messenger in redder states. so setting a bice line if i want to listen to you and make these your ideas, give the people who would be voting for him the same level of ownership does make a certain degree of sense. the question to me is where does it go from there? how does he build on that over however long he's in in campaign. >> it's definitely an exciting
time. i think beto o'rouke is a really interesting person to me for a lot of reasons. something people are latching on to right now is this idea he has this aversion to label. he's not calling himself a progressive but as garrett just mentioned, there's an opportunity for him to sell these progressive ideas and policies to people after listening to them, of course, and his first time in iowa, in a way that could attract voters who are not necessarily down with this democratic, socialist movement that they see happening or perceive to be happening at the national level. the other interesting thing though is as democratic primary voters want someone to fight against trump and everything he stands for and has created in this current political moment, do they want someone, are they feeling fired up by someone saying let's unite together, i want to unite the country, let's come together. i think there's room for him to make that argument on both sides but it will be interesting how someone takes like him and his message compared to someone like kamala harris ready to fight tooth and nail or elizabeth warren ready to fight tooth and nail against donald trump and everything he created. >> i know what you're saying.
i didn't hear him say we won't fight. i heard him say we won't eat each other. we're going to save the eating for the opponent. i didn't hear any -- and i sat and watched his whole event this morning. i was riveted by the striptease. i was like wow, off came the jacket. i'm not being pevey. off came the jacket and then the sweater. you saw him warm up. i worked in politics longer than i worked in television, and barrett said it at the beginning, he has "it," whatever that is. at the moment he has the most raw political talent in the field. whether that gets him beyond tomorrow, who knows. but i sort of would challenge the idea he didn't display fight. he just made clear he's going to save it for trump. >> but it also is a different type of fighting. i don't think you have to say the word fight to know he will fight against donald trump. running as a democrat for president you're inevitably fighting against trump in some way or another. >> the own justice department is
fighting against him. >> that's exactly right. but he does bring something unique and you know this idea or criticism that well, we know him because he lost the senate race, $80 million that he raised for that senate campaign, $20 million of that came from out of texas. that suggests this national appeal he started growing in the two years he was running for senate in texas is only going to continue moving forward. and you know, his name i.d. is not great in places like iowa where he's never been or where i was just monday, and people literally did not know who he was when we showed a photo of him. and then we're like he's beto o'rouke. texas? yeah, you'll get there. it's early and he is making people feel something and i think that will stick longer than here's x, y and z policy we have. >> that's exactly right. we vote for the candidate who makes us feel like what we want to feel like. part of the problem the way policies are covered, and i have been on both sides of it, we analyze one democrat's medical plan versus another, and nobody
really votes on that. there's so much interesting stuff written during the 2016 campaign about trump's appeal to the authoritarian voter, which is a fear-based appeal. it alarms people, it gets them out to the polls. when beto is doing is an opposite of a fear-based appeal. it's a hope-base add peel. appeal. and that makes voters feel like hey, maybe that's someone i want. that will be the acid test, hope versus fear dynamic because trump will campaign on fear and a democrat has to campaign on hope. >> i think that is so spot on. as you pointed to, beto o'rouke is interesting to watch. donald trump is also interesting to watch. but they're interesting to watch for very different reasons. we watch donald trump the way you might someone on an edge at the corner of the high-rise and wonder whether or not they're going to jump or a guy in a car driving towards the car, will he crash the car? and it's fascinating and scary to watch that happen. people are watching beto
o'rouke -- >> that sounds like a diagnosis. >> hanging out behind the wheel. i think people watch beto o'rouke -- >> not just for the striptease. >> not just for the striptease, except nicolle, but he's a younger investigati younger version of biden, he's positive, moving forward as a community, so people are fascinated by him for healthier reasons than they were fascinated by donald trump and that's important for the country. >> let me show you what donald trump said. >> what's your reaction to beto o'rouke? >> i think he's got a lot of hand movement. i have never seen so much hand movement? i said is he crazy or is that just the way he acts. i watched him a little while this morning during i assume some kind of a news conference, and i have actually never seen anything quite like it. study it. i'm sure you will agree.
>> someone studyth and be things he does protest too much. >> beto o'rouke conducts an orchestra with his hands while he speaks. he has a very specific speaking style. i found myself doing live shots in the beto o'rouke speaking style by the time i got out of texas after the midterm campaign. he's highly caffeinated, highly energetic guy. if that's what it takes to get people to recognize who he is, the o'rourke people could be happy and if that's the worst donald trump can bring against him on day one, they'd be happy about that too. >> garrett, stay on the trail out there. we love talking to you. when we come back, the rebuke to donald trump's authorization. to donald trump's authorization. ♪
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to repute his corner stone of his platform of national emergen emergency declaration aiming money to build a border wall. 12 republicans in all voting against the president on this of a final tally of 59-41. the resolution will go to trump's desk and he's not being coy of his plan. quote, veto, everyone is back. alexi. >> yes, this is a stunning review for the president that reflects this turmoil that's building in the republican party right now under president trump. the fact that senator mike lee thought they could come up with an alternative plan and convince the president to compromise and he says i am not going to support whatever you are coming up with and this resolution you
are voting on. to do this suddenly and you know this whole national emergency thing is reflective of the same pattern that we are seeing of his using unilateral executive authority by being the president of the united states, whether it is executive orders, he signed how many he did the first year alone or governing via tweets and now this national emergency, it is not surprising to me that he's not backing down. it is surprising how republican senators are breaking from him. >> you have been profound of this topic and i want to hear. >> thank you. >> no, you have. we blurred in with news with weather and sports, it is the most damage being done for the country under donald trump. >> i take solace in it because i don't think we'll get
republicans reputeuadiate trump. >> that animates them. even mike lee can talk about the encroaching imperial presidency on the congress on the article of one branch. that's where they'll start to cleave away from trump based on these constitutional issues rather than based on his personality. >> it saw the limits of his political power. they're down with his trumpism and ridiculous wall but they draw a line on the other side of the wall beyond blowing up the constitution as it was written to leave congress, powers of appropriation. >> i think everyone had been waiting and wondering when the gop was going to demonstrate political courage. you know when was the party going to stand up for good
conservative principles or principles of good government that transcended in politics. this is a clear moment. the president is trying to reach into congress and steal the powers of the purse in order to get a vanity project built so he can campaign on it. it is not good for the country or his party. it is not good for immigration. he's full steam ahead on it thinking it is good, i think it is good that the republicans finally stood up and said no. >> is it too little or too late. and the mueller report, they know he's going to veto it. it is just a statement and it seems to me that two years in is a little late to be making statements. they knew this is what they'll be getting. he ran as an authoritarian didn't think putin was all that bad. >> better late than never especially when they feel you just mentioned that the president i encroaching on duties for congress. maybe that's why. maybe they feel he's over
reaching and stepping in their toes and getting in the way of them doing their job which is legislati led legislating. we'll see if they'll follow it up and vote pass him going against whatever they say they disagree with. they have to have action behind it, too. >> he's going to over ride their will and do whatever he wants. >> we'll techniques in our last break, we'll be right back. break it's the right g with a terrain management system for... this. a bash plate for... that. an electronic locking rear differential for... yeah... this. heading to the supermarket? get any truck. heading out here? get the ford ranger. the only adventure gear built ford tough.
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i can talk to these friends all day. thank you for watching us and i am nicole wallace. hi chuck. >> hi nicole. >> how are you doing? >> i am all right, i am all right. i am ready to go. it is 2020, baby. >> thank you, nicole. >> it is thursday, well it be beto boom or beto bust? ♪ good evening, i am chuck todd in washington. welcome to one of the bigger days we have yet in the 2020 race. before most people were awake, beto o'rourke made it official. announcing he's running for president, he spent his first day on the campaign trail in iowa. his big kickoff scheduled late in the month in his hometown el pa paso.